Designing a baby shower – by Sarah Tapley

Guest blog post by Sarah Tapley, Studio Manager, TUCK STUDIO.

Earlier this year I hosted a baby shower. To be honest, I haven’t been to many baby showers and had certainly never hosted one, but my longest and dearest friend was having a…well, we didn’t know.  And not knowing the sex of this prospective new citizen certainly added to decorating challenge.

So, I set out to create a gathering that would be a creative, non-gender specific shower at a reasonable cost.

The first thing I needed was a ‘spring board’ of sorts – a palette on which I would base the decor. I purchased this Themis mobile (below) for the baby from Tuck Studio. I love the colours and it was perfect for a ‘neutral’ (non-gender specific) baby shower. I pulled out the turquoise, the lime green and, my favourite neutral, the grey as the core palette for the decor objects for the shower.

Photo: Submitted – Themis Mobile designed by Clara von Zweigbergk for Artecnica. Available at Tuck Studio.

I found paper at Michael’s; a beautiful graphic white and turquoise floral print and a deeper turquoise solid colour. I cut the paper out into circles and then stenciled and cut out “baby [and their last name]”. The tiny clothes pins held each circle to a fishing line.

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

(Found in the image below) I incorporated more of the grey into the gift wrapping. I found some “After Christmas Sale” wrapping paper at Indigo, some polka dotted ribbon and striped tissue paper (from Michael’s) and a fitting gift bag from the Dollar Store.

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

(Below) I received this really great Animal Calendar as a gift, which was purchased at the MoMA . I love the simplicity of the concept. I wanted to add animals and colour but I didn’t have the heart to spray paint them, so I traced each animal and all their parts on bristol board cut them out and then added a coat of lime green spray paint to each side. Once they dried, I put all of the little pieces together.

PHoto: Submitted – Animal Calendar, Made in Japan and Available at the MoMA online store.

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

Above the main food and cake table I wanted to hang something light and not visually distracting. I thoroughly coated plain white string with a simple white glue and water mixture and then wrapped balloons with the string (rotating the balloon as I went).

FYI: You must let them dry completely before deflating the balloon or the string structure will lose its form.

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

The concept for the station below I found while surfing the web. The idea was for all of the shower attendees to give the new mom the best mothering advice they could.

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

All noted directions were traced and cut out of doilies.

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

What I was looking for was a very simple, white frosted cake. I thought about making one of my own, but meandering through the local Superstore for other shower supplies, I noticed this fine specimen. I was told that it was supposed to be decorated but somebody had made a mistake. I thought “perfect” and the lady packed it up for me.

I came across the idea for the cake decoration from a photo while I was searching for visual inspiration. I used Martha Stewart’s ‘Tissue Paper Pom-Poms How-To’  and simply scaled the size down to ‘itty bitty’. I attached the pom-poms to some chop sticks and voila!

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

Here are a few more images to leave you with.

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon, Oil painting by me, Sarah Tapley.

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

Photo: Gordie Mackinnon

Frequent (and I mean frequent!) stops at Value Village and the Salvation Army have longed fueled my twin obsessions:   wooden bowls and fabrics (as shown in the photos).

Thank you for letting me share this with you. What projects are you working on?

Other blogs around throwing parties:
Small parties Big Impact: tips on how to entertain.

‘I do’ decor:  weddings on a budget.

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